Performing on 28th April 2012 @ The Hi-Fi Bar
At 8pm sharp a small, cozy crowd made their way inside Melbourne’s The Hi-Fi Bar, gladly swapping the city’s nighttime chill for the venue’s warm confines. As soon as the doors opened, the early punters took up their most favourable spots and the night was off to an intimate, comfortable start.
Brisbane’s the Cairos were first to take the stage. For a group of young-looking musicians, they played their songs as if they had been in the game for a lot longer than their youthful exuberance let on. Upbeat, fun and infectiously enthusiastic from the very beginning, filling the small spaces between songs by interacting with the slowly growing crowd. About half way through their set, with the track “We All Buy Stars”, it seemed a flicker of recognition flowed through the crowd. Team that with their groovy, indie-rock version of “Bette Davis Eyes” and the night at the Hi-Fi was off to a great start.
Melbourne local boys Loon Lake were next to take the stage, and by the time they came out the crowd had grown substantially. They kicked the energy levels up a few notches and their bright melodies played over their brand of raw, unpolished surf-indie rock. Keeping crowd banter to a minimum, the boys kept the energy going through their set and the crowd were definitely thankful. Triple J favourites “Bad To Me” and “In The Summer” (yep, the song from the Nescafe ad) were met with the most enthusiasm, as the majority of the crowd finally got a chance to sing-along. Their cover of Amy Winehouse’s “Valerie” added a nice touch to their set, roping in the unfamiliar members of the crowd. As they left the stage they were met by huge applause from the now packed venue.
Bluejuice’s reputation as an exciting live act is definitely well known, and the buzz that filled the remaining spaces in the Hi Fi Bar was ready to explode. Dressed in homemade fluorescent costumes they immediately launched into “Can’t Keep Up”, the opening track to their most recent release Company, and the crowd were immediately under their spell. With a quick greeting of “What’s up c***s” from vocalist Jake Stone, they headed straight into another newie, “The Recession”.
“Vitriol” from 2007’s Problems, and the first well-known song of the night, really got the crowd’s energy peaking. The set list for the night was put together perfectly, featuring a great mix from all three of the band’s albums, catering to fans new and old, and slotting in the hits at just the right time to make sure everyone was singing along. The newer material didn’t falter, with tracks such as “I’ll Put You On” evoking almost as much dancing and singing along as better-known tracks like “Ain’t Telling The Truth”. The crowd were singing, dancing, clapping, jumping and waving at every chance they got.
Vocalists Stone and Yiannoukas were hard to peel your eyes away from, as the two singers continually fed off the crowd’s energy. Stone and his speaker climbing antics ensured there wasn’t a single part of the stage his feet didn’t run over. The fantastic musicians that provide the backbone for the band cannot be overlooked. The four men behind the drum kit, keyboard, guitar and bass, are just as exciting- perfectly transforming the band’s catchy and polished studio sound into an infectious, loud and exciting live performance.
The set closed out in perfect fashion, with a three-song assault made up of infectiously boppy “Cheap Trix” from the band’s recent release, the crowd loudly singing along with the song’s catchy hook. This was followed by recent single “Act Yr Age” before rounding out the night with clearly the most anticipated and best known track from Bluejuice’s collection, “Broken Leg” which saw the crowd squeezing out every last ounce of energy, sweat and voice from their bodies. The break before the encore was short, the boys returning with a great cover of KWS’ hit “Please Don’t Go”.
Once again Bluejuice lived up to their live reputation, delivering a full throttle high-energy performance from beginning to end.
By Gloria Brancatisano
Check out photos from Blujuice at The Hi-Fi Bar here.